Age: 10 or 11. Grade: 5. Situational background: In fourth grade, and in a different school, I had a bully. His name, let’s call him Gerald. He was big and mean. I would have to ride the city bus to my dad’s store on Saturdays, Gerald wouldn’t let me stand at the bus stop near my house. He would throw rocks at me so I would have to walk a mile to another stop just to avoid him. He terrified me. Lucky me, we moved away.
Imagine if you will my horror when in walks Gerald to my new school (Old school really, I somehow always managed to go back to Club Heights.) My heart dropped and my stomach churned. My fears were founded. The boy proceeded to make my life hell at recess. Ugh, what was a girl to do? I would not tolerate this, and I had a plan! With a friend (who was in junior high) we came up with an elaborate plan. This school had a particularly mean sixth grade. They were big and on the lookout for ways to destroy someone’s life. Yes, I would ruin Gerald’s life by planting a note. Yes a note, because all too often, the pen really is mightier than the sword.
This note, my friend and I wrote up, was disgusting to say the least. It was sexual in nature and made Gerald look like a creepy, disgusting, sexual deviant. The kicker, my friend had usurped a sample of Gerald’s handwriting, and thus the note looked very authentic, too authentic.
Flash forward: The very next day, being very careful to go unseen, which I was, I planted the note just outside the sixth grade room, and waited.
Things did not go as planned.
Within thirty-minutes of me planting the note, Gerald was called to the office. Oh to be a fly on that wall. The boy returned an hour later in tears, oops, at this point I started to feel sorry for him, his eyes were large, red, his cheeks tear stained, and he was looking at me. At me? This is the moment that my name was uttered over the intercom. Oh, no, no, no, I thought. But how? How?
Side note: To this day I have NO IDEA how they knew it was me. There were no witnesses, only two people knew of the note, and the other did not go to school with me. So my friend could not have ratted me out. Could there have been cameras in the hall as early as 1986, 87?
I entered the office. My teacher was there, the principle, and the school nurse. My parents were not called (To this I get angry, as a parent at least, my parents should have been part of this conversation, seriously, it was a sexually explicate conversation, to their defense, they were reading what I wrote) I was lectured on sex, sexual deviance, and then they told me that Gerald told them everything.
Apparently my friend and I had held him down and forced him to write this letter. WHAT????
I told them, no, we didn’t hold him down, but they said yes, yes you did, how else could the handwriting match? I didn’t really arguing with them after that point. My head was still reeling over being busted, and that Gerald would “confess” to being forced into writing the letter. Not to mention that these adults were looking at me like I was a dangerous human being. After listening to them talk about this they warned me: I was to stay away from Gerald or they would have to involve the police to protect him. Protect him. Oh the irony or is this simple reality?.
The positive side of this story: I am thankful that a teacher found the note, as in hindsight I see how wrong it was that I would write what I wrote in an attempt to destroy the boy’s life.
Gerald never bothered me again, in fact he seemed to fear me after this.
Negative side: Whatever those teachers wrote in my permanent record came back to rear its ugly head when I was fifteen.
Very Negative side: We will reach this when we talk about memories from my 17th year of life.
I am not proud of my actions, and I assure you, it came back on me tenfold. Even though the boy was wrong to be a bully, I went overboard and really could have ruined his life. Yet, as I think back to this little gem of a memory, I still wonder how it was I was caught. I also wonder how they made a boy falsely confess to something he did not do.
One good Point: If they can get a strong boy of 11 to falsely say that two girls held him down and forced him to write a letter, a letter he didn’t even know about, you can bet that “Confessions” cannot be seen as proof positive of someone’s guilt. Remember: Even I tried to tell them that HE didn’t write the letter at all and that he didn’t even know about it…YET it was THEIR truth that stood. Something to think about.